Photos of the Week – October 16, 2020

For most of this week, I’ve been working through the selection process for our next Hubbard Fellows. We received a record number of applications this year, which I assume has a lot to do with the pandemic-related job market. While it’s a lot of work to read (virtual) piles of resumes and cover letters and conduct numerous Zoom calls with prospective candidates, there are certainly positives. The biggest of those is that every single candidate I’ve talked to has reinforced my optimism about the future of conservation. Folks, there are some incredibly talented and motivated future conservation leaders on the way. Now, we just have to decide which ones to offer Fellowships to… Wish us luck!

By this afternoon, I was suffering some serious cabin fever, so when I saw some diffuse clouds heading toward the sun, I pulled myself away from the computer and headed across town to Lincoln Creek with my camera. Among other things, I worked toward my (imaginary) annual quota of milkweed seed photos. Here are a few shots of common milkweed (Asclepias syriaca) seeds. Have a great weekend!

Nikon 105mm macro lens. ISO 320, 1/200 sec, f/18.
Nikon 105mm macro lens. ISO 320, 1/125 sec, f/18.
Nikon 105mm macro lens. ISO 320, 1/125 sec, f/18.
Nikon 105mm macro lens. ISO 320, 1/100 sec, f/18.
Nikon 105mm macro lens. ISO 320, 1/125 sec, f/16.
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About Chris Helzer

Chris Helzer is the Director of Science for The Nature Conservancy in Nebraska. His main role is to evaluate and capture lessons from the Conservancy’s land management and restoration work and then share those lessons with other landowners – both private and public. In addition, Chris works to raise awareness about the importance of prairies and their conservation through his writing, photography, and presentations to various groups. Chris is also the author of "The Ecology and Management of Prairies in the Central United States", published by the University of Iowa Press. He lives in Aurora, Nebraska with his wife Kim and their children.

8 thoughts on “Photos of the Week – October 16, 2020

  1. Your first comment about all the applicants. I saw it another way. Lots of people want to get into various outdoor related fields but very few jobs available. Its the reason I walked away from Wildlife Biologist years ago.
    I have a niece with a doctorate in Aquatic Entomology that ended up else where than her field of study. Such a shame.

    • I am expected to call other people Dr., but I do not have this honor for myself. People can be expected to switch careers up to seven times on average. Your niece’s job might change, but the fact that she has a PhD does not. There is no shame in furthering knowledge while having other jobs to pay the bills. What would have been a shame is if your niece never went and got a PhD in the first place.

      • I don’t think people change careers 7 times, jobs maybe but not careers.
        I myself changed jobs maybe a 18 times since becoming an adult. But changed careers maybe 3-4 times.

        Its a shame that many, if not most who get degrees in outdoor fields never end up in a career that they studied. That was my point. This is due to much fewer jobs than applicants. I work with many young people while having management work done on my place. The story is the same for all of them. They have educations in various outdoor degrees and none are doing what they spent 4 years min. of expensive college on. Their degrees are not needed to the jobs they are doing now, in fact no college degree is needed.

        Its a shame that this happens because it wastes time and resources on something that never gives a return. Silly to spent 6-8 years of your life getting advanced degrees only to end up cleaning pools in the end.

        As for my niece, she wasted approx 4 years of her life and tens of thousands of dollars on an advanced degree that she does need to be where she is now. She could of learned everything she knows now on her at her own pace without college. Such a waste.


          The current economic situation will not last forever. However, she will be considered a doctorate for the rest of her life. Even if she does not get a good return on the investment in her education, at least she did something she wanted to do. There are a lot of people who become lawyers, engineers, or go into medical fields who wash out before finishing or end up doing something else.

  2. Love your pictures, I recently had the amazing experience of being in a two acre field full of milkweed, in a windstorm! I felt like I was in a snow globe, I thought about next years monarch caterpillars and smiled.


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